Hide table of contents

Here are the project updates so far from December 2015 and January 2016. These serve as a place for anyone in the effective altruist community to share anything they'd like about EA projects from these two months. This helps with coordination and communication, and you're encouraged to add to it liberally. If you would like to add to the project updates, go to the December 2015 and January 2016 Hackpad


What EAs have shipped over the past ~2 months

  • The EA Survey went out in several more venues
  • The survey of local EA group organizers was sent out
  • Charity gift cards (CGCs) finally launched at http://www.charityscience.com/charity-gift-cards.html
  • Donation trading system/optimized donations system minimum viable product launched at: The Giving Basket
  • AMF won $25,000 thanks to everyone’s effort on the Project For Awesome 2015 Video Campaign
  • EA chats - launched on the EA Facebook group in January, received 35 sign ups. Sent out the first round of connection emails.

EA project updates from the past ~2 months

Anyone can and should describe anything they’re working on here, regardless of whether they can attend the meeting!


Project For Awesome 2015 Video Campaign

  • AMF won $25,000 thanks to everyone’s effort!
  • Worldsuck was thereby decreased

Annual EA Survey

  • Went out though:
    • GWWC Newsletter
    • TLYCS & ACE venues
    • EA Newsletter
    • Many local groups
    • Messages to personal contacts
    • Emails to past survey takers and EA Profiles joiners who hadn’t taken it yet
    • Local group organisers (for distribution)
    • GWWC members
  • Proposal for what to include in the 2015 survey results

Charity gift cards (CGCs)

  • Finally launched at http://www.charityscience.com/charity-gift-cards.html, building on our work last year
    • Description:
      • Charity Science Gift Cards open the door for those closest to you to make a massive impact in fighting global poverty. You purchase the gift card, and the recipient chooses from one of our three GiveWell-recommended charities. Similar to Giving Games, CS Gift Cards are a great way to spread the word about the most effective charities in the world. 
  • Here’s how it works: 
  • Step 1: Enter your information and purchase the gift card
  • Step 2: In less than 24 hours you will recieve a PDF gift card by email with a unique identifying code on it (and the cute santa above). 
  • Step 3: Send the PDF gift card to a friend and/or print the PDF and give it to a friend. Your recipient simply clicks through to our website to redeem the gift card by choosing one of our supported charities.
  • That’s it!

The Effective Altruism Newsletter

  • The team had a productive meeting on the 10th Dec. Notable results:
    • Decided to switch from sending on Mondays every two weeks to sending on the first Thursday of every month.
    • We committed to 2 measurable goals:
      • Increase the subscriber list to at least 10,000 by Jan 1st 2017
        • This isn’t wholly within our control, as we’re dependent on the growth of the EA movement and external sources of subscribers.
      • Keep the unsubscribe rate below 2% per month, at least on average
    • We listed our aims:
      • Saving readers time following different places
      • Spreading key news, where theres a benefit to reaching lots of people
        • e.g.:
          • jobs
          • ea survey
          • opportunities for impact
          • resources for ea
      • Spreading key aspects of the EA mindset, esp. to newer people (evidence-based, cause-neutral, etc.) 
      • unifying(?) the movement
        • (we were aware that this is vague and discussed ways to cash it out)
      • Providing a single place where all the different projects, people and orgs can reach people rather 
      • Showcasing high quality content, which can have positive effects
        • Examples of positive effects
          • Keeping people interested in EA and reading about it until they do behaviour change

Shared EA server and tech help

  • V light promotion of its availability. Webpage to point to is Shared EA server and tech help 
  • New Incentives Photo Backup
  • Projects helped
    • EA Australia
      • Developed website based on Peter McIntyre’s design.
      • Hosting and Maintaining the AU website.
      • https://effectivealtruism.org.au/donate this form generates reference numbers for bank transactions and allows an admin to confirm payments and auto-generate confirmation emails. We will add Paypal soon, which will auto-confirm the payments. It can publish donations received based on donor consent. Useable across Drupal7 sites. We designed this to be freely useable by other EA websites - contact haryshwaran@gmail.com if you’d be interested. 
    • Schools outreach
    • a few more

EA Forum

  • Made place for usage notes/FAQs/etc. that tech team and mods can point people to: http://bit.ly/1OHRd1X
  • Fixed a few bugs (login; search not working; etc.)
  • Decided re meetups feature

Support the Reach Every Mother and Child Act

  • The act is still at the committee stage - to follow it, see https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/114/hr3706
  • scotttweathers@gmail.com wrote a blog post for TLYCS: http://www.thelifeyoucansave.org/Blog/ID/227/This-legislative-act-could-end-newborn-and-maternal-deaths-by-2030
  • You can still support the act as detailed on the project page

Worldwide EA Donation Routing Mechanism

  • Big news from Australia
    • EA Australia launched
      • Lets Australians donate to effective charities tax deductibly
      • Offering GiveWell’s top recommendations to start with
      • .impact built a website for this at https://effectivealtruism.org.au/ (design by Peter McIntyre)
    • AMF recently became the first GiveWell recommendation to achieve direct tax-deductibility
    • We told all Australians we had contact details for via EA Profiles and the EA Survey about both AMF and EA Australia
  • Tom talked to someone interested in providing this for Brazil
  • Maria B笫elie became CEO of EA Norway (Stiftelsen Effekt - http://www.stiftelseneffekt.no/) on January 1st. The two main objectives for this semester are:
    • Set up a online donation portal with all of the needed back end systems, with .impact’s help
    • Create promotional material, mainly a commercial for public television and social media (see project page TV commercial for effective charity).

EA Facebook group

  • Tom Ash and Claire Zabel procedures for dealing with the frequent questions that new members send to mods.
    • Decision: mods and others to build up FAQ at the EA wiki and refer to this
      • Include a directory of who to ask about what topics

Translating EA material

  • EA Hong Kong & EA Taiwan are doing Chinese translations

EA Chats

  • Launched on the EA Facebook group in January, received 35 sign ups. Sent out the first round of connection emails.

Outreach to famous people/celebrities

  • Jack Ma
    • Brian Tse of EA Hong Kong working on 


  • Workathons
    • As of Feb 2016:
      • Going on in London
      • Planned to start soon in Melbourne
      • Large international online ones dropped

Local effective altruism network

  • Wrote an action plan to get newer local groups to hold their first meetup
  • Shared the spreadsheet of local group details which we maintain (including up to date details of each group’s current organisers) with other organisations
  • GWWC published their evaluation of the summer chapter seeding push by them, GBS/EAF and LEAN.
    • This features 70 new chapters seeded, and an optimistic estimate of $1,068,600 in counterfactual donations led to (or a pessimistic estimate of $321,000)

Shop for Charity

  • Announced (old) decision to pause any further development of this. People can absolutely keep using it (the lack of further work just means we can’t promise to stay on top of any changes necessary to keep it working).
    • Announcement at https://www.facebook.com/groups/dotimpact/permalink/543317582502563/ 
  • Dylan Matthews of Vox got in touch to write an article promoting this

Intentional Insights 

  • Publications
    • Our article, "The most romantic Valentine’s Day gift - giving to others," was accepted and published in The Plain Dealer, with a hard-copy paper readership of over 400,000  for its Sunday edition, the only one that has op-eds, and over  5,000,000 monthly website visitors. The article encourages people to make Valentine’s Day gifts to their loved one of donations to a charity. 
    • We published several EA-themed articles in The Huffington Post, which had significant social media engagement:
      • "How to Supercharge Your Generosity "
      • "8 Secrets of Savvy Donors"
      • "How to Avoid Feeling Cheated When You Give to Charity "
      • "Meaning, Purpose, and Civic Engagement Beyond Belief "
    • We published an EA-themed blog for Giving What We Can
      • "Why You Should Be Public About Your Good Deeds "
    • We published several EA-themed blogs for The Life You Can Save. 
      • "The Valentines Day Gift That Saves Lives" 
      • "How a Calculator Helped Me Multiply My Giving"
      • "Tapping Skeptic Hearts Through Giving Games "
    • We also published a number of EA-themed posts on our own blog
      • "How To Avoid Giving Regret "
      • "Saving Lives Using Reason and Compassion Through Giving Games "
      • "Multiply Your Generosity This Holiday Season "
    • We published several EA Forum posts
      • "Intentional Insights and the EA Movement  Q & A "
      • "Celebrating All Who Are in Effective Altruism "
  • Collaboration
    • Here is a link to   the outcome of an Intentional Insights collaboration with The  Life You  Can Save to spread effective giving to the secular community through Giving Games.  Giving Games are a participatory workshop where participants learn  about a few pre-selected charities,  think about and discuss their  relative merits and evidence for each, and choose which charity will get  a donation of about $10 per participant, with donations sponsored by an  outside party, in this case The  Life You Can Save. We  have launched a  pilot program with the Secular Student Alliance to bring Giving Games  to over 300 secular student groups throughout the world, with The  Life  You Can Save dedicating $10,000 to the pilot program, and easily capable  of raising more if it works well.
    • We have started on a project with The Life You Can Save and Local Effective Altruism Network to create a marketing resource bank to enable EA movement participants promote EA ideas broadly





More posts like this

Sorted by Click to highlight new comments since:

How much money/volunteered skilled labour would be needed to expand Shop for Charity to make it ready for Dylan Matthews to write a Vox article on it? I'm wondering whether, if it was a relatively small amount and people knew this, someone might be interested in investing in it. Think of the counterfactual impact one could claim!

Good question. It's easiest to answer in money terms: a very rough answer is $80 (which buys 7 hours non-management staff time at $6.46 an hour, plus the volunteer time we can parlay that into, plus some management time). That includes a healthy amount of safety buffer. If anyone would like to donate it, they could contact peter@peterhurford.com

To be clear, any volunteering on Shop for Charity would still need a good deal of attention from Tom, and we can't afford Tom focusing on anything other than what he's currently doing until we're fully funded.

very nice post

Curated and popular this week
Relevant opportunities